Suncruiser West Coast - - The Emerald Of The Discovery Islands -

Dodd Nar­rows – The cur­rents up to 10 knots will in­crease your boat wake. Keep a close eye for de­bris flow­ing out of Northum­ber­land Chan­nel.

Har­mac – Marked by large smoke stacks which help de­ter­mine wind di­rec­tion. Watch for de­bris in bay.

Northum­ber­land Chan­nel – Named after Al­ger­non Percy, the fourth duke of Northum­ber­land. Small tidal cur­rents gen­er­ally flow east, flood­ing or ebbing.

Duke Point – Site of a deep-sea and ferry ter­mi­nal. Jack Point to the north is marked by a green light and was named after Jack Do­holt, a res­i­dent.

Nanaimo River Es­tu­ary – Boom­ing ground marked by the piles. Pet­ro­glyph Pro­vin­cial Park on the west side has pet­ro­glyphs, in­clud­ing a be­ing that is half wolf, half whale.

Nanaimo – Name is de­rived from the In­dian phrase Sne-ny-mo which means meet­ing place of the tribes or big strong tribe. Nanaimo’s devel­op­ment be­gan when a First Na­tions dis­cov­ered coal in 1849 and alerted the Hud­sons Bay Com­pany.

Nanaimo Boat Basin – More than 9,000 feet of dock­ing when the fish­ing fleet is out. Petro Canada Marine Fuel, wa­ter, power, laun­dry, show­ers, wash­rooms, sewage pumpout, and stores close to the floats. A se­ries of mari­nas and marine busi­nesses lo­cated here with the Nanaimo Yacht Club. Re­cip­ro­cal priv­i­leges, moor­age on out­side of east and south floats.

New­cas­tle Is­land Pas­sage – Keep an eye out for buoys in­di­cat­ing fair­way. If you are headed north into the pas­sage keep the red buoy to star­board, the green buoy to port. Speed limit is five knots in the chan­nel. Large pub­lic boat launch on the west shore.

10. New­cas­tle Is­land Marine Park – Miles of hik­ing trails. Ac­ces­si­ble by boat or by foot-pas­sen­ger-ser­vice. Large pic­nic area at the south­ern end with a dance pav­il­ion. The is­land was named by of­fi­cers of the Hud­son’s Bay Co., after the an­cient coal city of New­cas­tle in Northum­ber­land. Good all weather an­chor­age to its south.

11. Mark Bay – Safe an­chor­age. One of the busiest in the Nanaimo har­bour. Provin­cially pro­vided moor­ing buoys.

12. Mckay Point – South is Kanaka Bay. It is not suit­able as an an­chor­age for any­thing big­ger than a dinghy.

13. Pro­tec­tion Is­land – Once known as Dou­glas Is­land; it is mainly pri­vate. Two small com­mu­nity parks off the beaches east of Good Point.

14. De­par­ture Bay – At the north end of New­cas­tle Is­land there is a car­di­nal buoy mark­ing Hor­swell Rock; the pre­ferred chan­nel is south­east. The ferry ter­mi­nal is here. Their wash makes it an un­com­fort­able place to an­chor or tie up. Kin Park Beach has wash­rooms, a swim­ming area and a great place to stroll the beach at the west end. Jesse Is­land has a pri­vate wharf at the west end. On the north side is an un­der­wa­ter re­serve that is used by scuba divers.

15. Hud­son Rocks – Marked by a light. To go through Hor­swell Chan­nel, stay west of Hud­son rocks and east of the light mark­ing Clark Rock.

16. Ham­mon Bay – Home of Shack Is­lands with fish­er­man’s shacks and Pipers La­goon Park. There is a boat ramp and pro­tec­tion from south and south­east winds. Neck Point to the north has a small gravel beach.

17. Five Fin­ger Is­land – Bar­ren and rocky. South­ern most point is marked by a light, watch for sports fish­ers.

18. Snake Is­land – A light on the north­ern tip. There are in­ter­est­ing ge­o­log­i­cal for­ma­tions on the western tip. Snake Is­land is thus named be­cause of the ar­ray of harm­less snakes found here. A reef to the south is marked with a flash­ing red light.

19. Lock Bay – Home of Sandwell Pro­vin­cial Park; a 12-hectare park with a nice sand and peb­ble beach, pic­nic area and wash­rooms. No fires or camp­ing. Some pet­ro­glyphs worth find­ing. An­chor­age is ex­posed to east winds and ferry wash. To the north is Or­lebar Point.

20. En­trance Is­land – A pic­turesque set­ting, a favourite fish­ing spot with lo­cals which is of­ten used as a mark in yacht races. The light­house was es­tab­lished in the 1870’s with Robert Gray as the first light­house keeper.

21. Pi­lot Bay – Named for the pi­lot boats that used to wait here to guide ships into Nanaimo Har­bour. Pro­hib­ited an­chor­age. Along the shores (east) there is good ex­plor­ing for divers and snorkel­ers of all abil­i­ties. A rocky beach is ac­ces­si­ble by road.

22. Taylor Bay – Home of Gabri­ola Sands Pro­vin­cial Park; 3.5 acres that cov­ers two beaches on the isth­mus be­tween Taylor Bay and Pi­lot Bay. Some an­chor­age but you will be ex­posed to north winds and ferry wash.

23. Galiano Gal­leries – Formed by ero­sion, these unique ge­o­log­i­cal features can be ac­cessed by an­chor­ing in the small bay to the south. The gal­leries are a sea cave over 200 feet long and be­tween four and five feet high.

24. Des­canso Bay – A light marks the north­west­ern tip. First called Cala de del Des­canso mean­ing small bay of rest, by the Span­ish ex­plor­ers Galiano and Valdes in 1792. The bay is ex­posed to the north and west, as well as to the wash of pass­ing fer­ries. To the south, steep bluffs are cov­ered with the ev­i­dence of birds who use the cliffs as their home.

25. Gabri­ola Is­land – Set­tled by First Na­tions thou­sands of years ago, other na­tion­al­i­ties were drawn to the is­land in the 1850’s when coal min­ers from Nanaimo were look­ing for a place to set­tle.

26. Percy An­chor­age – Ex­posed to west winds. Has a pub­lic wharf on the north side of the an­chor­age and a pri­vate wharf on the south side.

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